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Local 4-H Club Instructs City Kids

Cooped Up in Seattle teaches city kids to raise chickens the 4-H way



PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK

When you think of activities for kids in Seattle, “livestock club” probably doesn’t make the list. But a long-running Wallingford 4-H club teaches kids how to raise chickens, garden, sew and do woodworking. For the chicken-averse, there’s the option of raising and showing cats. 

Cooped Up In Seattle 4-H club started in 2010. About 20 members, ranging from ages 5 to 19, meet every month to learn about caring for poultry, practice showmanship skills and participate in community service. Projects range from planting trees to this year’s focus on raising money for 4-H Sister Schools in the African country of Burundi. 

Each June, the club hosts a poultry show where members show their chickens, then get a chance to use their knowledge to evaluate birds in a judging contest. 

4-H started in Ohio in 1902 as a tiny crop-growing club for kids. It now includes about 6.5 million members across the country who work with cooperative extension offices at more than 100 public universities. The co-ed groups teach children everything from how to raise livestock to computer programming and photography. Built into every club is a focus on public speaking, recordkeeping and civic responsibility. 4-H clubs are popular in rural areas, but Seattle is home to several, including ones focused on sewing, dogs and bunnies. 

Membership is open to anyone — visit Cooped Up In Seattle’s Facebook page (facebook.com/CoopedUpInSeattle4H) to learn more. Or check out this year’s poultry show, June 10 in Wallingford. For more information on 4-H clubs in Seattle and King County, visit 4-H.org/find.

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